Come maiden dear maiden...

[Image : Anne Lee]

On Friday, 11th July working in the Clare Archives in Peterborough I had a spare 10 minutes at the end of the day.  I had been checking for errors in my transcription of a poem that will be published for the first time in Anne Lee and my future volume "In the Shadows".  I idly turned over a few pages and encountered this, also unpublished poem outside of the Clarendon Editions (see comment below) of nine verses.  The day afterward I read the first three verses - the only ones I had transcribed by then - at the public reading of Clare's work at the John Clare Festival.  Here are those verses...

Come maiden dear maiden a beautiful troop
Of images now the young morning doth wear
The lark leaves her nest & the dew splashes up
As she flies through the clover & sings in the air

The bushes that rustle & catch at thy gown
The trees that thy pathway envelopes in leaves
The grass smooth as velvet runs green up and down
& from the young morning a rapture receives

& from the green hedge that the path brushes nigh
The flight of a bird shakes the rain in the place
& the blackbird frit off from her nest rushing bye
Shakes a shower on the path that will sprinkle thy face


Anonymous said...

Was published in Middle Poems, volume V, p. 133+.

Arborfield said...

Ahha... I have two volumes of the Clarendon missing from my collection, and you guessed it, MP V is one of them. However, the Clare Indexes are wrong too (always my first point of call) so they will need to be updated.

THANK YOU whoever you are!